You may apply by attending a clinic, or you may apply online. To apply online, see application buttons on main page.
Any low-level marijuana offense, committed in Denver, that was based on conduct now legal under current law, including possession of less than 1 ounce of marijuana. This program only applies to low-level marijuana crimes committed in Denver.
Low-level cases involving hemp, marijuana paraphernalia, or marijuana-infused products are also eligible.
If you are unsure if you qualify, please attend one of the clinics. The staff and volunteers will be able to review your case and determine eligibility.
The dates, times and locations of the clinics are:
Saturday, February 9
Denver Conflict Center
4140 Tejon Street
Denver, CO 80211
Sunday, February 24
Denver Park Hill Seventh-day Adventist Church
3385 Albion Street
Denver, CO 80207
Wednesday, March 6
Servicios de la Raza
3131 W 14th Avenue
Denver, CO 80204
Thursday, March 21
2901 Walnut Street
Denver, CO 80205
Q. Can I have my record cleared if I live outside Denver?
A: If your low-level marijuana offense was committed in Denver, you are eligible to participate in the program. Denver can’t clear low-level marijuana crimes off your record that took place outside of Denver.
Q. What if I was originally arrested for possession of marijuana but ultimately pled guilty to a lesser charge, can I have the lesser charge dismissed and expunged?
A. Yes, as long as the original conduct is currently legal.
Q. Do people have to attend a clinic to have their records sealed?
A. No. Although we are hosting a series of clinics, people may also apply online. See online application on main page.
Q. What do people need to have with them at the clinics?
A. People must provide a government-issued photo identification, such as a driver's license, state-issued ID card, or U.S. passport.
Q. Why do people need to pre-apply?
A. The pre-application phase is not mandatory, but it can help expedite the process.
Q. Do I need an attorney?
A. No. Volunteer lawyers will be at the clinic to guide applicants through the process.
Q. What happens if someone qualifies?
A. Lawyers from the Denver City Attorney's office or Denver District Attorney's office will write a motion to vacate, dismiss, and seal the prior conviction. They will file that motion in court. A judge will then rule on the case without a hearing. The applicant will then be notified of the decision. If the motion is granted, the applicant's conviction will be vacated and the charges dismissed. The case then will be sealed.
Q. How long will the process take?
A. The motion will be filed within one or two business days. After that, it is up to the judge to decide. We anticipate that most cases will be decided within a few weeks.
Q. What is considered a low-level offense?
A. Any marijuana offense that was based on conduct now legal under current law, including possession of less than 1 ounce of marijuana.
Q. Are there any associated costs or fees?
A. Most applicants should not incur any costs. There is a $65 court filing fee and in some cases, there may be an additional $28 fee by the Colorado Bureau of Investigation. The applicant will have the opportunity to request the court filing fees be waived. However, while funding is available, the Turn Over a New Leaf program and the Marijuana Industry Group, a TONL program sponsor, will cover the court filing fees that cannot be waived and the fees for the cases that require payment of a CBI fee.
Q. Does a low-level offense, such as a hemp-related conviction, qualify for the Turn Over a New Leaf program?
A. Yes. Low-level cases involving hemp, marijuana paraphernalia, or marijuana-infused products are also eligible.
Q. Will there be non-English speaking options available online or at the clinics and if so, what languages?
A. English and Spanish-language applications will be available online and at the clinics.
Q. Is there a deadline date for low-level marijuana crimes to be expunged?
A. There is no deadline to apply.
Q. This program is being launched seven years after recreational marijuana was legalized. Why now?
A. Colorado legalized recreational marijuana through the passage of Amendment 64. Unlike some states, Colorado does not have a statutory scheme that permits automatic expungement of prior marijuana convictions.
Q. What about Colorado House Bill HB2017-1266? Doesn't that statute address the problem?
A. HB2017-1266 creates a process for sealing prior convictions, but it does not contain a mechanism for vacating those convictions. Denver's program provides a simple and relatively easy process for those who qualify to have their low-level marijuana convictions vacated, dismissed, and sealed.
Q. Why can't Denver vacate convictions in prior cases en masse, as some other states have done?
A. Other states have legislation that permits that action. Colorado's state legislature has yet to enact such a statute.
Q. What about convictions obtained before 2001?
A14. Our date range is 2001 to current because that is how far back the court's computer system goes. However, if you have a case before 2001, please fill out the application and we will do our best to assist.
Q. Immigration Concerns?
A. People with immigration concerns are encouraged to attend a clinic. Volunteer immigration attorneys will be on site.
Q. Who will be the primary beneficiaries of this program?
A. Past convictions may be impacting anyone who wants to work in Colorado's marijuana industry, who may be completing a job application, or who is interested in a career in law enforcement. Wiping these offenses out will benefit those individuals.
Q. What happens after a person's conviction is vacated, dismissed, and sealed?
A. By statute, that person is not required to disclose any information about that sealed conviction. That person may say that he or she "has not been criminally convicted". § 24-72-703(4)(d)(I), C.R.S. (2018).
Q. Where can people send questions not answered here?
A. Questions can be emailed to NewLeaf@denvergov.org.